FOOD REVIEW: Takeshi-San serves up unpretentious Japanese fare

Stephanie Zheng
·Lifestyle Editor
·3-min read

Does a dish exist if there are no online reviews? At Yummy! Reviews, we aim to be honest and transparent about the food we cover. As much as possible, we paid for the food. Where meals are offered for review, don’t assume for a moment we will disguise our delight or displeasure. What is guaranteed, however, are honest opinions (though we recognise taste is subjective) and relevant deets, to help you make a decision about a visit.

If the number of Japanese restaurants and eateries is anything to go by, Japanese food is by far one of the most popular cuisine in Singapore. For a country obsessed with beautiful presentation and good food, Japanese cuisine happens to tick all the boxes, cementing a spot in most foodie's radar. From omakase with weeks-long waiting list to packed izakayas to ramen joints in every shopping mall, you'll be hard-pressed to not find a Japanese eatery in your hood. 

A new contender in the scene is restaurant Takeshi-San, tucked within the alleys of Holland Village. This new restaurant is helmed by Executive Chef David Lee, who was with award-winning Sen of Japan. The restaurant serves up modern interpretation of Japanese cuisine along with its curated range of award-winning sakes and Japanese spirits. 

When the Yummy! Crew headed down on a weekday night, the place was already packed to the brim with diners, despite being opened for only two months. 

Takeshi-San Exterior (Photo: Takeshi-San)
Takeshi-San Exterior (Photo: Takeshi-San)

The vibes of the place were open and welcoming. We stepped in, and were greeted by handmade white Sakura blossom ceiling fixtures, and the sake bar. The interior is warm and unpretentious, though small, which adds to the hole-in-the-wall appeal of the place. 

Takeshi-San Interior (Photo: Takeshi-San)
Takeshi-San Interior (Photo: Takeshi-San)

We started off with a Uni Chawanmushi ($12), which, while luxurious, stayed firmly within the lane of Japanese flavours. 

Uni Chawanmushi ($12)
Uni Chawanmushi ($12)

The first hint of modern flavours came in the form of the Salmon & Hotate Carpaccio ($12). The freshly sourced sashimi was complemented by a citrusy umami reminiscent of Chinese cuisine.

Salmon & Hotate Carpaccio ($12)
Salmon & Hotate Carpaccio ($12)

The Supreme Unagi Roll ($18) was a crowd-pleaser, with crunchy tempura bits and ingredient such as cream cheese coming together in perfect union. 

Supreme Unagi Roll ($18)
Supreme Unagi Roll ($18)

Do it for the gram with the insta-worthy Premium Kaiden Set ($26) and Salmon Set ($22). In all honesty, it wouldn't have made a difference whether served on a fancy flat plate or on a staircase-lookalike. 

Kaiden Sets (From $15)
Kaiden Sets (From $15)

The Scallop Pasta ($24) is heavy on the palate even though the portion looked small. Share this because the flavours can get gelak quite quickly. 

Scallop Pasta ($24)
Scallop Pasta ($24)

Verdict

Takeshi-San is a good place to satisfy your Japanese food cravings without emptying the wallet. While it's heavier on the flavours to suit the local palate, the service and food are sincere. The combined selection of food and liquor is substantial, so go with a group of friends to maximise the experience! 

Modern Japanese Fare from Takeshi-San (Photo: Takeshi-San)
Modern Japanese Fare from Takeshi-San (Photo: Takeshi-San)

In addition to their ala-carte menu, Takeshi-San offers lunch sets and a special lunch menu that starts from $8.90, daily from 11.30am - 4.30pm.

Takeshi-San

38 Lorong Mambong Holland Village, Singapore 277694

Open daily fro 11.30am - 3.00pm, 5.30 - 10.00pm

Tel: +65 6248 0886